This week Scott Mann joined Conservative colleagues in campaigning for a better deal for small scale fishermen.
The Conservative Manifesto committed the government to give more quota to local fishermen, and to sustainable fishing. The Government has already committed any quota increase to local fishermen. As the next stage in meeting this pledge Scott Mann is supporting a licencing bid by the Coastal Producer Organisation.
The UK’s Marine Management Organisation is currently considering whether to licence the Coastal Producer Organisation - a new cooperative that will help under-10 fishermen access more fishing quota.
Scott Mann has written to the Chief Executive of the Marine Management Organisation, and the fisheries minister,, supporting the bid. He was joined by Conservative colleagues, including the former fisheries Minister Richard Benyon MP.
Scott Mann said:
“Leaving the EU may bring sweeping changes to UK fisheries. While we are still in the system, we need to get the best possible deal for our inshore fishing industry. The Coastal Producer Organisation is a great way to boost access to quota by small vessels.”
“I stood on a manifesto pledge to rebalance the UK’s inshore quotas to smaller, locally-based fishing communities. True to the pledge, the Conservative Government has already committed to giving the first 100 tonnes of any extra quota, and 10% of everything after that, to the inshore fleet.”
“I will continue to fight hard in Westminster to get a good deal for fishermen now, in the Brexit negotiations, and after we have left the EU. My priorities are securing jobs, and growing our fish stocks.”
Jim Pettipher from the Coastal Producer Organisation said:
“Small scale fishermen (the “under 10’s”) have been hardest hit by failures in the quota system. They represent 77% of the fleet, but have access to just 4% of the quota. Very few are members of the big Producer Organisations (only 57 of over 3000 vessels), and without this membership, they have no voice.
“That is why we have set up the English Coastal Producer Organisation, to give small scale fishermen a voice at the table and a call on the quota. If you’re a small scale fisherman, I’d encourage you to join, and I’m thrilled by the support we’ve had from MPs.”